Overnight Regulation

Overnight Regulation: Feds in hot water over missing guns

Welcome to Overnight Regulation, your daily rundown of news from Capitol Hill and beyond. It’s Wednesday evening here in Washington. We’re fresh off Super Tuesday with Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton appearing to run away with their parties’ respective nominations. Here’s the latest. 

 

THE BIG STORY

The federal government received a bipartisan bashing Wednesday for losing track of hundreds of guns and grenade launchers that were donated to police departments.

The General Services Administration (GSA) has transferred more than 9,800 firearms to state and local police departments since 1999. But many of these weapons later turned up for sale at gun stores or have been stolen, according to a government watchdog.

Congress is outraged.

{mosads}”This is not rocket science,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.). “I don’t understand how something so simple can’t be done,” he asked. “We can put a man on the moon and yet we can’t track firearms?”

An inspector’s general report issued in June 2015 found that 485 firearms have gone missing — only 24 have been recovered, while the rest remain on the loose.

During the first hearing on the matter, lawmakers from both sides of the aisle expressed concern.

“Can anyone tell me why the Cayce, S.C., Police Department, which polices a city of less than 13,000 people, needed two military-style grenade launchers in the first place?” asked Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-Va.).

“Do you sit around saying, ‘Well, I wonder who could use a grenade launcher?'” Connolly continued.

“What could go wrong with that?” he asked.

Lawmakers also questioned why the GSA has only appointed one person to oversee the program.

“What did you think was going to happen to these weapons?” asked Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.).

Continue reading: http://bit.ly/1po8mCC

 

ON TAP 

The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Subcommittee on Securities, Insurance, and Investment will hold a hearing to examine regulatory reforms to improve equity market structure. http://1.usa.gov/1Y1W4vm

The Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee will have a hearing to examine the impacts of federal fisheries management on small businesses. http://1.usa.gov/1TiU96N

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold a hearing to examine the federal government’s administration of the Safe Drinking Water act in Flint, Mich. http://1.usa.gov/1QgNVhA

 

TOMORROW’S REGS TODAY

The Obama administration will publish 175 new regulations, proposed rules, notices and other administrative actions in Thursday’s edition of the Federal Register.

–The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will issue new airport security measures.

Airport security officials will now employ advanced imaging technology — better known as full body scanners — to screen passengers for explosive devices and other weapons.

TSA has been using full body scanners since 2008, but a federal court ordered the security agency to go through the formal rulemaking process.

The rule goes into effect in 60 days. http://bit.ly/1pnR0Wu

–The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will issue new regulations for low-income housing credits.

The rules apply to government utility allowances provided to people who live in low-income homes. The allowances will now cover renewable energy that tenants purchase directly from their landlord, which is “not delivered by a local utility company.”

The new rules go into effect immediately. http://bit.ly/1pnR0WD

–The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will issue new rules that could affect mortgage lending.

The CFPB rule will define which rural areas are affected by the agency’s mortgage rule.

The CFPB will begin accepting applications at the end of the month for designating rural areas. http://bit.ly/1L69PHw

 

NEWS RIGHT NOW 

HHS announces $3.6M in emergency Flint funds http://bit.ly/1QsqF3E

Obama administration bans e-cigarette use on all flights  http://bit.ly/1QmGVBY

Hundreds rally on Supreme Court steps during pivotal abortion rights case http://bit.ly/1oPzARX

Supreme Court appears split in abortion arguments http://bit.ly/1T8JYkL

GOP pushes Interior head on agency rules http://bit.ly/1UzooW6

The forgotten history of Justice Ginsburg’s criticism of Roe v. Wade –The Washington Post http://wapo.st/1TRfZ0X

White House said to vet appellate judge for Supreme Court seat – The New York Times http://nyti.ms/1VR40Oy

 

BY THE NUMBERS

9,800: Number of guns federal agencies donated to state and local police departments since 1999.

485: Number of those guns that went missing.

(Source: The inspector general of the General Services Administration).

 

TWEET OF THE DAY

“Enough is enough – Congress must let all those struggling with addiction know that help is on the way. #opioids,” Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) tweeted on Wednesday afternoon. 

 

We’ll work to stay on top of these and other stories throughout the week, so check The Hill’s Regulation page (http://digital-stage.thehill.com/regulation) early and often for the latest. And send any comments, complaints or regulatory news tips our way, tdevaney@digital-stage.thehill.com or lwheeler@digital-stage.thehill.com. And follow us at @timdevaney and @wheelerlydia.

Click here to sign up for the newsletter: http://bit.ly/1pc6tau 

Tags Donald Trump Ed Markey Hillary Clinton

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